Senate committee suggests entrances of Parliament and Lodges be manned by police stringently

Islamabad Politics Report/ Moazzam Raza Tabassam: While reviewing the commission of CCTV cameras and walk through gates at the Parliament Lodges, the Committee suggested that these entrances be manned by police stringently.

The meeting of the Senate House Committee was held on Wednesday to discuss service and security issues at the Parliament House and Lodges.

 DIG Operations and Security Islamabad informed the committee that the police department in Islamabad was understaffed and untrained for this job. Keeping this in view, the Committee suggested that these gates, since most of them are out of order, be removed and that security at the main gates be tightened instead. The Chairman showed concern regarding the process of CCTV Camera monitoring at the Lodges.  He instructed Secretary CADD that SOPs for camera operations be submitted to the Committee so that members are kept abreast of the complete monitoring process.

Chaired by Deputy Chairman Senate, Senator Saleem Mandviwalla; the meeting was attended by Senator Samina Saeed, Senator Sardar Shafiq Tareen, Senator Mir Muhammad Yousaf Badini, Senator Kulsoom Parveen and senior officers from CDA and CADD.

As notified by most Senators of the Committee, there were serious reservations regarding unauthorized persons residing within lodge premises. Senator Kulsoom Parveen and Senator Samina Saeed shared their concerns stating the current state of affairs a severe security breach.

DIG Operations and Security Islamabad, informed the Committee that in a joint operation with Special Branch, most unauthorized occupants of side rooms at the lodges were removed. However, the whole process will be completed within two days. A compliance report on the current status was submitted to the Committee. 

While discussing budget utilization, the Committee was of the view that disbursements of funds to contractors is a major impediment in project completion.  It was suggested that serious measures be taken to rectify funding issues, so that progress on major projects be made.

While raising the issue of non-availability of ambulances at the Parliament House and Parliament Lodges, the Committee was informed that two ambulances were dedicated to deal with emergencies – one each at the Parliament House Dispensary and Parliament Lodges. The Committee members refuted this claim saying that none were available when needed.  Chairman Committee instructed Executive Director FGSH to monitor the ambulance service on a regular basis so that medical emergencies could be dealt with in an effective and timely manner. 

While addressing the issue of construction of an additional block at the Parliament Lodges, Chairman Committee reiterated that the committee was here to resolve hiccups in the project and not to settle disputes. The committee instructed the  contractor M/S Habib Rafiq (Pvt) Limited to provide a solution whereby he could exit the project as and where it is, so that the House Committee could get the remaining work completed within a period of one year  through any other renowned government entity. 

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